Sunday, September 04, 2005

The governor is responsible for managing the response to natural disasters

Behind Enemy Lines is doing a good job studying how we should have responded to Hurricane Katrina. He has pointed out that Eleanor Clift does not understand who had responsibility for responding to the disaster. He has also found work in the Washington Post and in LGF indicating that the Bush administration tried to assume more responsibility but was rebuffed.

We may not have responded well to this problem, but learning the wrong lessons from these events will make us less safe.

Monday, August 15, 2005

Sheehan Divorce Complaint at The Smoking Gun

A copy of Patrick Sheehan's complaint is now available at The Smoking Gun.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Cindy Sheehan Divorce - Dissolution With No Kids

The documents that I identified on the web site of the Superior Court of California County of Solano, which seem to refer to a divorce filed by Pat Sheehan, indicate that the type of case is "D - Dissolution without kids". Some have questioned whether these documents could be authentic given this casual sounding language. This language also seems inconsistent with the mention of Casey's brother, Andy Sheehan, in this Drudge Report article.

The language is probably used to indicate that there will be no custody issues in this case. Casey is survived by three siblings, one brother and two sisters. Each of these children of Cindy Sheehan is 19 years of age or older. The children of Cindy Sheehan are described in this article by Jonathan Curiel of the San Francisco Chronicle.


There is a document on the website of the Superior Court of California County of Solano which describes Case ID: FFL087021 - SHEEHAN, PATRICK VS. CINDY, filed Friday, August 12th, 2005. The case is described as "D - Dissolution without kids".

This appears to describe a divorce between Cindy Sheehan and Pat Sheehan.

Pat is the Petitioner and his attorney is Glen Andrew Deronde (FindLaw). We were unable to reach Mr. Deronde for confirmation. is the respondent with no attorney listed. The judge in the case is Alberta Chew.

Friday, August 12, 2005

Cindy Sheehan Has No Agenda

On The Huffington Post, which had 20 posts on the front page this morning, each of which each dealt with Cindy Sheehan, there is this article by Thomas de Zengotita which suggests that President Bush should meet with Cindy Sheehan on the condition that she not reveal anything that that occurs in the meeting.

This is not a good strategy. If he chooses to meet with her, he should do so unconditionally. There would be nothing to prevent her from going public with the conversation and she probably would. For him to require such an agreement would reflect negatively on him. If he chooses to meet with her, he should do so unconditionally.

I think whether he meets with her or not will have little to do with the outcome of this. She will continue some form of protest in either case. In one case, she is armed with the fact that he will not meet with her. In the other case she is armed with her account of what he said.

The problem is that there is nothing that the President can do to satisfy Cindy Sheehan. He can not reverse her loss. If she wants condolences a meeting will not help because she has already met with him and she views him as cold and uncaring. She does not seem to want the meeting to bring about a policy change. She shows this by not using the time she gets with the media to articulate an alternative plan. Immediate withdrawal is not a plan without some comment on why she thinks that this will not create a larger mess for people like her son to clean up. I have not heard a compelling description from her of what the President could do to satisfy her.

If there is nothing that the President can do to satisfy her, it seems unlikely that she intends to engage in a productive conversation. It does seem, based on her writings, that she intends to harm him without regard for any action he might take. Given that I do not understand why any of the observers of this mess would believe that the President would meet with her.

I would not be surprised if he decides to meet with her, but he should do so without attempting to place unenforceable conditions on her. I imagine that she would be surprised if he decides to meet with her. She should be surprised given that she is sending strong signals that nothing good can come of a meeting between them. If she wants a meeting she needs to signal a potentially productive agenda.

Here are two other good discussions of this:

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Oh, Shiite

Baghdad Mayor Is Ousted by a Shiite Group and Replaced

Picking Our Battles

The less recreational drug use we have the better off we are, but many of us use alcohol while believing that the most significant drug problem lies with the users of the most unpopular drugs. Perhaps if we added it all up the time and health that we lose to alcohol, tobacco, and marajuana, we would find that those costs exceed the costs of meth. Perhaps the biggest costs are the losses that we suffer by trying to force the use of drugs to zero by focusing on the supply, making the prices high, and the business of drugs more unsafe than it needs to be. Perhaps we are willing to accept these costs because it helps us see the drug issue as a problem with someone else.

Here are a few good articles arguing that the meth epidemic is not the large problem that we make it out to be. We need to keep these problems in perspective as we try to pick the most productive way to work on them.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Monitoring the Blogosphere

Well, there is a derivative of the B word, but I doubt anyone would know what I meant by weblogosphere...

Yesterday I thought that the way to monitor the blogosphere was to use Technorati, but I have been watching the "Top Searched This Hour" and they seem unnaturally stable. I guess I understand why "Bush Indictment" has stayed on top given the frenzy that occured yesterday. I guess the question is how did it get there. Look some of the other items on the list. How would "Ruby On Rails" stay in the top ten for a whole day. I do not believe that it has become a common search word based on the fact that the author won a Google-O'Reilly Open Source Award. Why would that have happened when no other technology or person from the awards made the top search list (Ubuntu, SQLite...).

  • Audioscrobbler - I would not have expected this to have leggs.
  • Google - If this were organic staying power, I would expect the keyword to be "news feeds".
  • Linux - I am happy to see it, but if this made it there organicly, why is windows not there.
Then there are the people (and, presumably, a radio station).
Are these who you would have expected? How many do you think will be there tomorrow?

I think the "Top Searched This Hour" must really show searches which, by random action, bubbled up into that list and may have only had leggs to stay there for a few minutes, but then were locked in by two phenomina. First, once the query is on that list, people click on it. Are those searches included in the statistics? Second people fishing for traffic begin writing articles about these topics and the amount of material available to inspire people to perform these searches increases.

I think it is time to find a new way to monitor the blogosphere.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Technorati and a Bush Indictment Rumor Storm

I find Technorati very entertaining. It seems to be the best search engine for keeping track of what is being discussed on the web logs of the world. I especially enjoy checking the "top searches this hour" feature on their main page. Right now the web log world seems to be in a lather over a rumor that George Bush has been indicted. The Technorati search is now returning sites that discuss that the bush indictment is probably a fantasy.